Jan. 20, 2017
Remember how North Dakotans voted Measure 1 down in 2016 by more than 75% statewide?
Instead of respecting North Dakotans’ wishes, North Dakota Farm Bureau is now suing to have the entire law thrown out in court.
The North Dakota Farm Bureau has brought a lawsuit against the state attempting to overthrow North Dakota’s Corporate Farming Law, even after every North Dakota county voted to reject corporate farms and support family farms. If Farm Bureau is successful, it would open the gates to allow corporations to flood the state, trading family farm values for corporate farming values. Did you know that if you have NoDak Mutual Insurance, you are a member of the Farm Bureau and that Farm Bureau is representing you as a member in the lawsuit?
Call the North Dakota Farm Bureau and urge them to stop their attack on democracy and family farms! Implore the Farm Bureau to drop their lawsuit and to work with family farmers and ranchers to grow animal agriculture in a sustainable way. The Farm Bureau and their corporate allies are refusing to accept the will of North Dakotans and the future of family farms – even though North Dakotans overwhelmingly voted in favor of family farms and against corporate farms.
CONTACT THE NORTH DAKOTA FARM BUREAU
4900 Ottawa St.
Bismarck, ND 58503
1101 1st Ave. N.
Fargo, ND 58102
Fargo office: 701.298.2200
What is at stake if North Dakota’s 84-year old family farming law goes away?
Watch our “A Farm With No Family” video series to see how large-scale, corporate ag has forever changed the livelihoods of farmers, ranchers, and communities in South Dakota.
North Dakota’s anti-corporate farming law has been in place since a 1932 initiated measure. In the 2015 legislative session, SB 2351 was passed and signed into law by Governor Dalrymple. SB 2351 would have allowed nonfamily corporations to own and operate dairy and swine farms in North Dakota. The North Dakota Farmer’s Union led an effort to put SB 2351 on the ballot as a referendum. Twenty thousand signatures were gathered with the help of allies, including Dakota Resource Council, and SB 2351 was put on the ballot as Measure 1. Over the next several months, the North Dakota Farmer’s Union, North Dakota AFL-CIO, and DRC worked together to educate and mobilize voters to turn out and vote no on Measure 1. On June 14, 2016, Measure 1 and corporate farming were rejected statewide 75.73% to 24.27%. (See how all the counties voted here.)
WORDING OF REFERRED MEASURE NO. 1
(Senate Bill No. 2351, 2015 North Dakota Session Laws, Ch. 84)
Senate Bill No. 2351, passed by the 2015 Legislative Assembly, would allow the ownership or leasing of up to 640 acres of land for the operation of a dairy farm or swine production facility by a domestic corporation or limited liability company. Senate Bill 2351 would also require the agriculture commissioner to develop reporting and monitoring rules to ensure compliance.
A few weeks before the Measure 1 vote, the North Dakota Farm Bureau announced they were filing a federal lawsuit in Bismarck to challenge the entire North Dakota anti-corporate farming law. The North Dakota Farm Bureau believes the anti-corporate farming law violates the interstate commerce clause of the United States Constitution. The lawsuit was filed in United States District Court for the District of North Dakota (Bismarck).
- The Nation: Whose Side is the American Farm Bureau On? by Ian T. Shearn
- Letter to the Editor: Farm Bureau no friend to family farmer by Marie Hoff
- Letter to the Editor: Farm Bureau can still do the right thing, by Jeri Lynn Bakken
- A Farm with no Family video series
- Op-Ed: Family Farms, yes; Corporate Agriculture, No, by John Ikerd
- High Plains Reader: Family Farms are the future of agriculture, by Fred Kirschenmann